Coleslaw with Buttermilk Dressing

Homemade coleslaw is easy, especially if you pick up a package of slaw mix in the produce section. It’s less expensive, though, to shred your own cabbage and carrots, especially using a food processor.

As for dressing, don’t be tempted by jars of prepared slaw dressing. As with most dressings, you get ingredients you may not want. It’s easy to mix mayonnaise with vinegar, lemon juice, and sour cream for traditional dressing. But don’t be afraid to experiment.

This week I decided to experiment with other ingredients. That’s how I developed my new favorite slaw dressing. Give it a try and see what you think.

Recipe

Buttermilk Dressing For Coleslaw

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 1 Tbsp + 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried mustard
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 sweet onion, thinly sliced or minced
  • Other seasonings to taste (celery seed, dill, etc)

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings. You may prefer more vinegar or a squeeze of lemon. When you are satisfied with the taste, add cabbage slaw mix to the dressing. Toss well, cover, and refrigerate for at least an hour. Overnight is better. Toss again before serving.

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Hammy New Year!

At our house, we celebrate New Year’s Day with ham, cabbage (or greens), black eye peas, and cornbread—tradition for good luck in the coming year.

Ham doesn’t have to be a laborious undertaking. I use a pressure cooker. This year I pulled out my oldest electric cooker, my trusty Power Pressure Cooker XL, because it still works great and its 8-quart capacity is perfect for my 6 pound, semi-boneless ham. (Unfortunately, Tristar stopped selling this model)

I borrowed a trivet from my Instant Pot 6 quart, added two cups water, and placed the ham on the trivet. That’s all that’s necessary, but I wanted to jazz it up a bit since, you know, it’s New Year’s Eve and I feel festive. So I inserted a few whole cloves and added some dried mango for a bit of sweetness to complement the savory pork. Any fruit works, especially pineapple and dried apples. Use what’s convenient for you.

Mangoes and cloves add interesting flavor notes.

Forty minutes later, the ham is hot and ready to serve (after the pot depressurizes, of course.) Plus the pot has a delicious broth* perfect for flavoring vegetables or soaking dried black eye peas.

I always use this method for cooking ham, and without any fancy additions. A good ham and a couple of cups of water for forty minutes in the pressure cooker is delicious on its own.

Happy New Year!

Slice and serve.

*Caution: don’t add salt until you taste the ham. It can be salty enough as is. Then season as desired.

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Instant Pot Sausages, Cabbage, and Carrots

Autumn brings out the comfort foods, it seems. Here in the Hasty Tasty Kitchen, I’m always experimenting with easier, onepot versions. After discovering delicious chicken apple sausages at my big warehouse store, I developed this one. It’s a healthy, hearty meal for two that’s a delicious blend of sweet and savory flavors.

NOTE: I used my six quart Instant Pot, but the recipe works in any multi cooker or stovetop pressure cooker. Add cooking time for other methods.

Recipe

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces water for Instant Pot
  • 2 sausage links (3-4 oz each) cut into 1/2” slices
  • 1/2 head green cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 12 baby cut carrots
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • (Optional) 1/2 tsp bacon drippings

Directions

  • Pour water into the inner pot to the Instant Pot.
  • (optional) toss cabbage with bacon drippings.
  • Place all remaining ingredients in a steamer basket and place inside the Instant Pot above the water.
  • Seal pot, set at high pressure for 4 minutes.
  • After cook time, cancel. Allow pressure to drop on its own one minute before release. Carefully open pot.
  • Check seasoning and add salt/pepper as desired.
  • Using tongs, toss and serve.

This dish pairs well with a slice of cornbread. Enjoy.

Cabbage, sausage, and carrots.

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Watergate Salad Revisited

Remember Watergate Salad? That pistachio pudding confection that appeared at Shoney’s salad bars, church potluck dinners, and holiday dinners. Dole published their version, featuring Dole canned crushed pineapple of course, and Jello had theirs, featuring Jello Instant Pistachio Pudding mix. There are variations (some added coconut). This ubiquitous dessert has remained a favorite and continues to make its appearance at dinners and buffets.

Why is it called Watergate Salad? Good question. It’s not a salad and it didn’t originate in Washington DC at the Watergate complex. Unconfirmed stories claim a food writer titled it after Jello introduced its pistachio pudding because the Watergate wiretapping coverup was in the headlines. The name may be silly, but it stuck.

I recently came across my copy of the recipe, handwritten some 40 years ago by Rachel, my late mother-in-law. Making Watergate Salad today was like a visit with her. So, in Rachel’s memory, I made her version of the recipe.

Watergate Salad

Serves 8

🔘1 package instant pudding mix, pistachio*

🔘1 20 oz can crushed pineapple + juice

🔘1 8 oz tub non dairy whipped topping (thawed)

🔘1 cup miniature marshmallows

🔘½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts

🔘1 small jar maraschino cherries, drained and halved

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Refrigerate. Serve.

That’s it. Simple, easy, and light. No wonder this dish is still a favorite.

*To cut calories, I use the sugar-free Jello Instant pudding, but I recommend using regular whipped topping. The fat free and sugar-free versions don’t save many calories, and the texture and taste are significantly better in the regular or extra creamy varieties.

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